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Cardio - I'm so out of shape!

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Old 02-20-2012, 08:17 PM   #1
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Default Cardio - I'm so out of shape!

I started going to the gym to in early January and have quickly been able to increase my weights and have really enjoyed it. But I don't like any of the cardio machines so I put off doing it. So a few days ago I started walking outside and geez, I can only walk 1.5 miles in 30 minutes and I feel like practically panting at some points on the hills (they are not very big). Please tell me that this is going to get easier. It doesn't feel like it's my heart as much as my lungs that are having a hard time! lol
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:22 PM   #2
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Cardio gets better and easier the more you do it. Stick with it and build your endurance little by little. Soon you will be looking back on this post and posting about how far you can walk. Good luck
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:23 PM   #3
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It will get better! Just keep going and you'll build endurance. I started out exactly the same and now I LOVE cardio. =)
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:30 PM   #4
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It definitely gets easier! About a year ago I started walking around the lake by my house and at first I could barely get around it and it took like an hour, now I can do the whole thing in about 25 minutes. I break a sweat, but I don't feel like I'm gonna die anymore. Keep at it!
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Old 02-20-2012, 08:30 PM   #5
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Well I'm glad there's hope for me! I'll have to keep that in mind tomorrow when I'm out panting in the cold. This morning when I walked it was 34 degrees which wasn't helping the lung situation but knowing me I'll be complaining when it's 90 and too hot!
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:29 PM   #6
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It'll get better. I started walking 30 mins on the treadmill 5-6 days per week, it's getting better already in 2 weeks. I walked 1.745 miles this morning. Definitely slow compared to some but that's where i'm at for now. I keep track of it so I can make sure my distance is increasing though.
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:39 PM   #7
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Yep definitely! I could only last 15 minutes on the elliptical now I can last an 1hr 30minutes. Start with baby steps
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Old 02-20-2012, 09:48 PM   #8
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Oh those early days of cardio were TORTURE! And not only does it get easier the more you do it, but with every pound, so it's a double whammy! Stay with it. I remember at 235 not being able to go up the stairs without being winded and now I run up them just for fun (cuz I'm a dork like that lol!).
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Old 02-20-2012, 10:10 PM   #9
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I wanted to suggest that you may want to switch up your routine as well. Try doing different things so you don't get bored... Zumba, and other dance type classes are a great way to get your cardio in without even realizing how hard you are working, plus it is fun! Spinning classes are great too. And it WILL get easier... but remember to recognize yourself for the small accomplishments you reach too!

I agree with you about the weather too! I don't generally like the cold weather... but it is so refreshing after a workout!!
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Old 02-20-2012, 10:21 PM   #10
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Cardio is exercise for you heart muscle. Go slower if you need to. Go less distance. Build speed and distance up over time.

It's just like weight training. You start off where you are and then add more. You don't grab the biggest off the rack and start THERE!

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Old 02-21-2012, 02:22 AM   #11
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What cardio machines have you tried? I found I hated elliptical at first but now I love it, I couldn't stand spin but today I jumped on a spin bike and really enjoyed it.

Did you have a trainer set you a routine or are you just going with what you want? I was trying to do too much at first, I'd get on the treadmill for 30min and plod away hating it. My trainer suggested 10min on two different machines and it made a big difference.

Also, if you are already outside walking you might want to try the C25K program. Gets you going from not being able to run to being able to run 30min. I started about six months ago, its meant to take 9 weeks but I had to repeat a few weeks and then there were plenty of weeks I didn't run at all. But now I can run for 22min, whereas before I could barely make it through a 30sec run and couldn't even make it through the first week day one session. If you've got android (and I assume apple too) you can get an app for your phone (I use c25K lite) that tells you when to run and when to walk and you can have your music playing at the same time, just hear a little "ding" when its time to change. What I really enjoyed was it stopped me getting bored with walking, it gave me a goal, and its a measurable change in cardio fitness.
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:20 AM   #12
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Thanks so much for the encouragement!

I had a trainer design my program and go through it with me the first time. I actually think I know what I'm doing with weights since I spend years going to the gym when I was young (I'm 47 now). I can tell that I'm comparatively stronger muscle-wise than I am with the cardio. The trainer wanted me to start with 20 min of cardio. I tried the elliptical but could only last 7 minutes on the lowest level and I was DYING. I tried it the next time and could also only last 7 or 8 min so I switched to the LifeCycle and could do 15 min on Level 2. This was so much more comfortable for me and I could actually listen to my IPOD and get into it without just staring at the timer and counting down in my head. However, after a few workouts I decided that I'd rather do my cardio outside if the weather cooperates. I have a treadmill at home, and I'm not a big fan of treadmill workouts but it or the LifeCyle will be my backups if the weather is bad. Oh, and I also tried the Stairmaster and could do 5 minutes after completing the 15 min on the bike. It was a weird revolving staircase type though not the kind I used to love back in the 80s which had pedals. I had the constant feeling that I was going to not place my foot right and fall off.

C25K? It might be something to consider once I lose a bunch of this weight. I have to be extra careful because I have naturally loose joint in my body along with tight muscles so I'm quite injury-prone. At the moment, I know my feet couldn't take the pounding though I'd love to be able to run in the future.

I've heard good things about Zumba. My gym does have some classes but for the most part, they don't work with my current schedule though they do have some water aerobics classes in the evenings that might work. Do they actually help build cardio endurance? I've seen some of the ladies just chatting and floating on their noodles. I've done them before though I don't remember how much it helped my fitness level.

Thanks again!
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:38 AM   #13
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I'd like to share!

6 months ago I couldn't walk for 10 consecutive minutes (at a "brisk" pace)...now I'm jogging 45 minutes without stopping - in addition to 30 minutes of other cardio workouts, plus weights, during the same trip to the gym.

As a former runner, there were a lot of tears and self-loathing for having gotten so out of shape. I even gave up for weeks at a time.

Eventually, I slowed down and worked within my limits, and eventually I saw some progress - at some point I turned a mental corner, and I was able to challenge myself with every workout.

When I got up to jogging 20 minutes, my strength and endurance seemed to snowball and I got to 45 minutes inside of a month!

C25K is a nice template, just remember to repeat a week when it was a challenge, and only move on to the next week when you feel strong enough.

Emotional/mental barriers were always an issue for me. I was also afraid of injuries, but I think that's just something we tell ourselves when something is physically challenging to do. It was hard, and I was embarassed that all my flab was bouncing around when I worked out... I *HATED* it! But let's face it, we aren't in good enough shape to "train hard", the risk of injury, outside of a muscle cramp, is pretty low.

One thing that motivated me, was watching these 300+lb people on the biggest loser jogging, without injury, day after day. And the one's who do injure themselves are the one's who are whining and complaining that they can't do it...and they fall down all pitiful and helpless. I think attitude can both work against you, as well as for you!

Your attitude, just like your body, needs training. Work on positive thinking, block out the negative thoughts, and you'll get on the training path of your dreams! The mind leads, the body follows.

Good luck!
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Old 02-21-2012, 07:57 AM   #14
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Wow Espressowhip! I'm very impressed with your progress. It is very inspirational to hear your story. I hope to be where you are one day.

Let me ask this, would there be a reason to attempt running (or another higher intensity cardio) when I'm in my heart rate zone (I'm wearing a HRM) just walking? WOuld it whip me into shape faster or something?

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Old 02-21-2012, 09:53 AM   #15
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I had another thought! I actually decided to get involved in a sport (cycling) for cardio. It was more interesting to me to train for an event than just idly use machines. My husband is doing it with me, or I train with a good friend. You were talking about C25k, that's what made me think of it. Try as I might, I just couldn't get into running
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